kellianne: (Default)

I am sitting by a marina somewhere up north after an easy 8 mile ride. And, you guys, it has been almost 5 years since I quit doing cardio because of my stupid arthritic foot. I have even taken walking easy during that time. Couldn't do any cardio at all and never really thought to bike much in seattle because I am just not tough enough for those hills in that weather.

The East Bay may not be hip. It may not have street fashion or inspirational haircuts. I will probably not ever again get to walk into a local bar again and have everybody pretty and fun know my name. I don't have too many friends. I wear the same yoga pants every day.

But biking? In this weather? By this water? In these dirty yoga pants? Everything. I feel fucking great! My foot isn't bothered in the least. My lungs feel so happy to be pushed a little. My legs look, for the first time in ages, like they are starting to balance out in muscularity (my left leg is incredibly dominant no matter how much I stuck with my asana practice).

I feel so incredibly grateful to my husband for moving us here. It is truly the biggest boon to my health and longevity, and it happened right at a time when I was starting to feel really awfully old before my time. I feel as if he has saved me from certain death. Or at the very least, he has helped to keep me from the very depths of chronic pain. Which is, not in a small way, saving our little family.

Hopelessness is contagious. I don't want my chronic pain to become a big part of Niko's story. I'd rather create a story about managing pain and finding joy, which doesn't come easy to everyone.

When Buster and I talked about the possibility of moving to Berkeley, I had fantasies about becoming a bike riding family. It was pretty outside my reality. It just seemed like riding a bike was the only exercise option I had left (outside of yoga, which is my forever practice). On Sunday, we are heading out on a 30 mile morning ride with some friends. My plan is to get to a 60 mile trek before the end of the summer. I'm just so excited and so thankful to have found a new healthy practice that makes me so joyful, especially one that I can share with my family and friends.

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kellianne: (Default)

I guess I am the type of parent who has no problems using the television as a distraction while she gets to have morning sex with her long lost husband.

So be it!!

I'm back in Seattle for one week! Hi!!

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kellianne: (Default)

I keep wanting to post my yearly survey and resolutions, but getting out a computer seems too daunting. It would mean getting out of this warm bed next to Niko. So I guess I'll just peck away at my iPhone for now...

We have now been at my parents' place for almost 2 weeks, with one week left to go. Buster left yesterday for the wilds of San Francisco. I had to fight off a meltdown yesterday because a week without my husband is a world of awful. The 15 year old in me really comes out in this place - at least having buster here keeps me on some better behavior.

I was worried that I would just lose it the moment he left town. Worst case scenario, I would be sitting in front of the tv all day with my kid, flinging handfuls of processed foods into our mouths whole making unintelligible mumbles in my Delaware accent.

As it turns out, that's not really who I am. And it wasn't really who I was, ever. So today I got up, made my banana buckwheat pancakes, and took Niko on an epic journey in a wagon to the small town I grew up in, which is just under a mile away.

We stopped in all the antique stores on the main drag, spent a dollar on some vintage hot wheels, saw an AMAZING mobile that my high school BFF made in the local gallery (I want to buy it!!), and went to the local cafe for a tasty lunch.

I was stopped by a few cars in my old town. People know me here! It's so wild because every one of us suddenly looking a bit middle aged Sometimes I think that life is too short. But then being here floods me with memories from lives I lived so long ago that I can't even believe they are my own memories. And that's the long and short of it, quite literally, I guess.

By the time we got home, it was late and we were COLD and exhausted. We slept in a cuddle for 2 hours and then I hustled Niko out to our ridiculous rental car (a mustang) to take a trip to Longwood Gardens, where the Christmas lights were stunning.

There was a really cool train set there. Unfortunately, we went to the train first... Which meant that I didn't get to see much else. I have to remember to take Niko to the trains LAST, because he never wants to leave a train.

After, we went out to dinner with Sean (my college boyfriend and soul brother) way out in the country. I didn't make it home until 10:30. Poor Niko was beyond exhaustion.

Tomorrow I need to spend the afternoon cooking for my little sister's birthday dinner. Saturday we are headed down to Baltimore for a reunion with some friends. I'm still considering a trip to NYC on Monday or Tuesday.

Mostly I am incredibly happy and excited. I feel a tremendous amount of gratitude that I get to spend this time here with Niko before going on our newest adventure. I am feeling pretty charged up for 2013!

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kellianne: (Default)

1) I have a lot of things to think about.

2) I don't have to be in a rush. I am pressed for time in a Newton sense, but feeling plentiful in an Einstein sense.

3) I am sleepy and expect to be smarter in the morning.

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It is lovely to spend the afternoon in a sunny house. It isn't even sunny in Seattle today (and hasn't been in almost a week), but today I am afternoon-ing in a place positioned just so, with lots of windows, and what a difference it makes. This morning was the first one in a while that Niko wasn't BEGGING me to be outside. He was perfectly content to sit by a fire and some big windows to play. It makes me realize more what I would be looking for in real-estate if we were to stay in Seattle, long term.

Not that we aren't staying long-term. We might. You just never know, in this family, what could happen in a year. It's fun being a Benson. It's great, exciting, stressful, fun. I mean one or both of us Benson adults might die of heart failure long before we'd like to go, just from the stress of being us, but everyone will say as we go, "they never were lazy." I'm fine with that.

And that, dear friends, is all the detail about how exciting we are that I am willing to share with you today.

Today I went to a class at Barre 3, which I've been meaning to check out for the longest time, and wow.... That was one expensive treat! One that I am now possibly addicted to. Classes out the wazoo, right down the street, and so much muscle burn and shake that I have no doubt some regular attendance is just the thing to infuse my yoga practice and my bad knee with some strength. I was proud then the instructor asked what I do to stay in shape at the end of class because I was "obviously strong". Extra proud because I feel like I haven't been doing enough at all. There just isn't enough time!

Since then I have been at Adam and Amelia's house sit, wrestling with Niko between his snuzzles and nose kisses. Man, my guy is so affectionate! I feel so fortunate for every last moment of the magic.

For all of you who aren't parents and can't understand how we field temper tantrums without totally losing our shit- know that the other end of those tantrums is the most sublime laughter and love anyone could ever possibly know.

I was thinking today of everything I've gained and lost through parenthood. I do wish I could be around in the later hours to take the cinnamon challenge after some cocktails (you know who you are). I do miss dance parties. I do miss having free time (and I find it somewhat hilarious that people who aren't parents think they have no free time, or that I was once overwhelmed with thoughts of having NO time before parenthood). But I love having a healthier schedule. I love that I always have an excuse for an afternoon nap when I'm not working (I am "sleeping" next to Niko now). I love maximizing my minutes. Somehow this journey has steeped everything in more meaning and health.

What else? Nothing special. My parents were here and it was REALLY nice to have them. We are leaving in a few days for a much needed vacation to places the sun shines, which should be helpful with holding us over until the sun shines in Seattle- which generally happens for only a few random days-long stretches between now and July. Vacation will be awesome. I miss family time with my husband because we almost never are together as three.

Generally I am overwhelmed with gratitude for Seattle in general. I've been thinking lately that there is no way, no how I could move back to the East Coast again. Mostly because it's not pretty enough and the food isn't as tasty. And of course also because every day out here is like an episode of Portlandia, which cracks me up.

That is all.
Good afternoon!

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Mar. 21st, 2012 10:08 am
kellianne: (Default)

I have a miserable toddler with a cold that just won't ebb an two parents en route from Delaware.

The two parents on the way, who I haven't seen in a YEAR AND A HALF, make me feel pressured to show them how awesome things are when everything is running smoothly. But I'm currently locked in the bathroom while my kid screams like he's being murdered because my husband is making him take off his PJs and put some clothes on. Which isn't all that abnormal, come to think, but I still don't get it. One can't live in footy pajamas alone!

Anyhow, my parents won't care. This is all just me being a control freak who wants to show off that she's a happy, grown ass woman. So I'm annoyed. And upset. And stressed.

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Mar. 17th, 2012 02:02 pm
kellianne: (Default)

I am fairly sleep deprived for the first time in some weeks. It's amazing what a difference it makes with all the voices in my head. They become pretty terrible when I am exhausted. Jeering, resentful, paranoid.

It's a wonder the first 1.5 years of parenting didn't totally do me in.

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First Joke!

Mar. 6th, 2012 07:39 am
kellianne: (Default)

Niko made his first official joke last week. It went something like this:

Me: Oo look, here's a cow! What sound does a cow make?
Niko: Mooooo!
Me: Right! And a horse says?
Niko: Neeeeee!
Me: Totally! And what about this pig?
Niko (laughing and exaggerated): HEL-LOOO!?

Cracking up on both ends ensues.

You guys, having a toddler is a parent's amazing reward for dealing with a sleepless baby. Our toddler, by the way, has been sleeping through the night (more or less) for 3 weeks now. Better late than never. Now life is amazing and we have everything we ever asked for (except money- but whatever). I am feeling so grateful these days.

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Jun. 25th, 2011 12:29 pm
kellianne: (Default)

This week has been so full of Niko promise and happiness, you guys!

I hit rock bottom a little while back with his nap and night schedule. We were literally laying down with him at least an hour before every nap and then an hour and a half for night time sleep. It was a full time job on top of all our chores, work and MOST IMPORTANTLY- play time! SO- I decided when my brother visited that it was time to start Niko's transition to being a one nap a day dude. I used Joey's visit and all the activity we were doing to start distracting Niko from his afternoon nap, and eventually started nudging his morning nap (which was always the easier nap) a bit later.

The results are amazing. We now have him in bed around 7:30 every night. He still has some night wakings, but Buster has been working on gently night weaning him by taking my milk factory out of the picture. So
B is always the nighttime parent until about 6, prior to then Niko is offered a bottle of formula if he seems really persistent, which he rarely drinks. Around 6, I nurse Niko- then we all cuddle and snooze until 8 or so.

Last night dude slept for over 9 hours on his own. I feel awesome. I don't expect that sort of sleep from last night forward, but just the fact that it happened tells me that we are on the right path.

It feels so freeing to have him down by 8, too. I have a night life again! I feel almost comfortable inviting people to sit for the evenings now, which I didn't feel confident about before, because he often wasn't down until 10- and by then we'd be too tired to do anything, and he'd be up by midnight anyhow. SO! Those of you who offered might just get a call soon!

Thanks for your patience with all my short tempered tweets and entries on this matter. Not sleeping is not good for these bones of mine. I'm hoping to see some of my health (mental and physical) get back on track during the next few months.

Also, thanks to my lovely husband for continuing to put up with me. [ profile] busterbenson is FAR more patient without sleep than his wife.

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kellianne: (Default)

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